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Presidents of Bulgaria and India inaugurate Mahatma Gandhi monument in Sofia

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Presidents of Bulgaria and India inaugurate Mahatma Gandhi monument in Sofia

A monument of Mahatma Gandhi was unveiled by President Rumen Radev of Bulgaria and his Indian counterpart Ram Nath Kovind at Sofia's South Park (Yuzhen Park) recreation area.

Highlighting the Mahatma's special connection with Bulgaria, Kovind said: "The famous Bulgarian painter, Boris Georgiev, spent considerable time with Gandhi in his ashram developing a close friendship."

The president of India said the installation of the statue could not have been better timed as in less than a month's time, on October 2, India is launching the worldwide celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi's 150th birthday. The statue was conceived and erected by eminent Bulgarian sculptor Ivan Roussev.

Kovind also presented a copy of Gandhi's book 'Hind Swaraj' to Radev. "Today is a sacred day for the Bulgarian people. You are celebrating your National Unification Day...I am, indeed, grateful to the people of Bulgaria for giving Mahatma Gandhi an eternal home in their beautiful country on this special day," Kovind said.

"This is a meaningful tribute to a man who dedicated his entire life to the service of humanity...In these times of strife, reckless violence and wanton destruction, his thoughts and values are ever more relevant," he added.

Kovind said Gandhi's life was a moral force that influenced many. His struggle in South Africa inspired Nelson Mandela to wage his epic battle against apartheid and his doctrine of Satyagraha became the inspiration for the civil rights movement led by Martin Luther King in the US.

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